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There's no identity crisis for Hawks swingman Marvin Williams. He knows exactly who he is.

There's no identity crisis for Hawks swingman Marvin Williams. He knows exactly who he is. But what do other think of the starting small forward? Find out inside.

HAWKSVILLE – The questions rolled off the tongue much easier than the answer.

I asked Marvin Williams the other day, “Who are you as a player, what’s your profile around the league?”

After rubbing his head for a second and smiling, Williams looked me dead in the eye and said, “I don’t worry about stuff like that. You’d have to ask someone else about that.”

Good idea Marv.

A quick phone call to a friend (a NBA All-Star turned pundit these days) offered up an interesting answer.

“Marvin Williams is their x-factor,” he said. “He’s the key to their season if you ask me. I think Marvin has to be the guy because he’s a 6-9, 240-pound guy that plays what I think is the most crucial position in the league these days. Whatever position the best player in the league plays, every guy on every other team that plays that spot becomes even more important. When MJ (Michael Jordan for you Y2K babies) ruled the league every shooting guard in the league instantly became more important. The same goes for all the small forwards now that LeBron is the man. So if Marvin can get to another level this year, the Hawks really have a chance to make some noise.”

That’s fine. And it’s a great discussion for another day. But it didn’t answer my initial question about Marvin’s game, which to me seems like an interesting mix of inside and out (more mid-range than post with a little 3-point wrinkle added last season) with a chance for so much more. So I pressed on, asking again for a definitive statement about what kind of player Marvin is in the eyes of a guy that’s played the game at a high level.

“Well, his game is hard to describe because I don’t know that he’s that easily categorized. The Hawks have never really asked him to fit into a specific hole as a shooter or rebounder or whatever,” my friend said. “I always felt like he had a chance to be a Jamal Mashburn-type player, a big guy that could work you off the dribble from the wing and finish with a jumper or push his man closer to the basket and finish there. But his handles have never impressed me. He was more of a situational shooter before last season, and those guys tend to drift in and out of games depending on who they’re playing with. But he opened my eyes last season with the 3-point shooting. I saw him early in the year when the Hawks started 6-0 and he was shooting the lights out and I felt like he had a chance to really break out, but he gradually eased up from out there as the season went on. He has to keep attacking from all over the floor offensively and hold his ground defensively. As far as who he is as a player, I think the jury is still out on him. And that’s a good thing. He’s still in the early stages of his career where he can define that for himself. This is a huge year for him individually. He can answer a lot of questions by showing he’s more of a consistent force than he’s been in his first few years.”

Most everyone I’ve spoken to about Williams since the summer, when he signed a new five-year deal with the Hawks, has echoed similar sentiments, the gist being that Williams still has room to grow and improve. I just wonder if how much of that we’ll get to see on a team where he’ll remain a third or fourth option on the offensive end of the floor.

KG IS WELCOME, TOO

Now that Zaza Pachulia is in the restaurant business, I expect the culinary jokes to become commonplace around here (fire away, Zaza’s thick skinned and a good sport).

Naturally, I kicked off the clowning last week while we sat in his spot (Eno By Zaza) for an interview.

“So is Kevin Garnett welcome here?” I asked, wondering aloud whether or not their nose-to-nose playoff dance from a couple years back was still a sore spot for both men.

After laughing for a few minutes, the always gracious Zaza welcomed not only Garnett but anyone in the world named Kevin or Garnett to frequent his spot. ”On the court, I’m always going to compete and fight hard,” Pachulia said. “Off the court, is another story. I hope Kevin Garnett comes to eat here. It would be great to see.”

Spoken like a true entrepreneur.

HOOP DREAMERS BEWARE

Utah Flash coach Brad Jones dropped in for a training camp visit last week and will return to Atlanta next week on more business. The Flash, the Hawks’ D-League affiliate, will be holding a one-day tryout at Athletics and Fitness Center at Clayton State University Oct. 24 at 10 a.m.

The flash have selected at least two players from the open tryout to attend their training camp in each of the past two seasons. Jones said Wednesday afternoon that as many as 17 players will attend training camp with the team in Salt Lake City.

Jones said the one-day tryout is open to all comers, provided they register (the fee is $150 in advance and $175 on the day of camp) as well as a player release and eligibility form. Registration can be completed online (and the forms can be found on the team’s official website).

The Flash will begin preseason training camp Nov. 15 before traveling to Tulsa for their first regular season game on Nov.  27.

OSCAR BUZZ

Who knew Josh Smith was the funniest NBA player of his time? He’s always kept me in stitches, but now he’s finding his way to the web in one hilarious video after another. He actually shows off some real acting chops in his new one-man spot that’s popped up online. His latest (courtesy of our friends at adidas, via a nice assist from my main man MS):

 

NICKNAME MADNESS

The nickname game is heating up with the regular season just around the corner.

OG member Big Ray is campaigning vigorously to tag rookie point guard Jeff Teague with the moniker “JT0″ (pronounced “Jay Tee Oh,” in reference to his initials and uniform number while also paying homage to the classic Pontiac sports car [GTO], per Nire).

Nire has taken it a couple steps further with a pre-made theme song (which I think needs a hip-hop edge for a youngster like Teague):

I’m more inclined to watch this Teague mix:


  Hawks and Grizz tonight at 8 from the Bluff City, in case you forgot.

419 comments Add your comment

doublet23

October 14th, 2009
5:53 pm

Clyde

October 14th, 2009
5:55 pm

ROLL TIDE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ernest

October 14th, 2009
6:05 pm

Sekou, would that ‘NBA All-Star turned pundit these days’ happen to be Steve Smith? That comment sounds like something he would say.

I look for Marvin to have a big year with continued growth and help the Hawks reach 50 wins this year. If he can consistently hit the shot after the kick out from whoever is driving to the basket, it will really put a lot of pressure on the opposition.

rms

October 14th, 2009
6:13 pm

rms

October 14th, 2009
6:16 pm

Whats with that arc in Marvin’s back?? If he get that straight maybe he can put up some consistent numbers and stay healthy.

Sekou Smith

October 14th, 2009
6:19 pm

Dang, Ernest. You act like I don’t have any friends. That’s cold my man.

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
6:19 pm

Props to Daniel for actually coming up with JT0. I just harassed people about it more :) .

And until Sekou can find a way to embed it in the post, here’s the pictorial representation of JT0:
http://img133.imageshack.us/img133/4303/littlejt0fkla.jpg

#21=Top50,1stBallot

October 14th, 2009
6:29 pm

Is it just me or does this sound like a draft analysis? It is a dubious thing where guys are still touting his potential for this/that in their character assessment of who a guy is in the league 4 years in. I’m satisfied that Duck is who he is. If he never gets better as a player (meaning more than a 3rd option) that’ll be o.k. because he’s one of the better 3rd(ish) options in the league in terms of skill set. Will he get “better” and add other facets to his game, I hope so. But as the scout says, it’s not that he can’t do things (besides lack of handle), it’s that he doesn’t do them- either by scheme or lack of desire enough. The jury is in for my part: Duck of all trades, master of none

RISE UP

Clyde

October 14th, 2009
6:30 pm

ANY STREAMS FOR THE GAME TONIGHT?

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
6:30 pm

It was bound to happen again eventually – that’s the first time I’ve seen someone call Marvin duck since like last December.

#21=Top50,1stBallot

October 14th, 2009
6:34 pm

Vava,

To the other blog post:

If you trade poorly of course you’re going to do poorly. That goes without saying. My point is that championship rosters (re: starting lineups) are infused with talent, not “organically grown”. The games in late june speak to that. Current Hawks squad has played together countless hours already, they should know their strengths and weaknesses. “Another year” should not add that much to their understanding- or ours.

RISE UP

#21=Top50,1stBallot

October 14th, 2009
6:35 pm

Nire,

It was probably me then too- I’ve been on hiatus from posting.

gman013

October 14th, 2009
6:36 pm

I think Sweet Tea-gue is the perfect name for Jeff. His game is sweet. He is in the south. Just seems natural to me.

JerryWest

October 14th, 2009
6:39 pm

Did you know Marvin Williams is 7 months younger than rookie Tyler Hansbrough?

gwite

October 14th, 2009
6:57 pm

^^
Unbelievable. Tyler was a man, playing amongst boys, so to speak.

In the same vein, up to somewhat recently, Marvin’s situation could be viewed as a boy, playing with grown men. Understandable why he’s been somewhat deferential.

This year he will probalby feel much more comfortable with his situation and “take the reigns”. Just takes some longer than others.

Ramon

October 14th, 2009
7:01 pm

Sekou, do you think if Marvin worked with a physical trainer like Tim Grover, this early in his career, he would have a better chance of staying healthy? I think all would agree his inconsistency mainly stems from health issues that are nagging more than any thing he’s missing on the court.

#21=Top50,1stBallot

October 14th, 2009
7:12 pm

Fellas, too soon on a nickname for “Jeffrey Demarco Teague”? The best ones are earned in some capacity. Would we (or maybe just me) have called Duck “Duck” without actually seeing the waddle in action? Isn’t Smoov so much more rewarding, or ironic depending on view point, given his game? Horford does not have one because he hasn’t “earned” one through anecdote. Joe neither, though silent assassin is cool I guess. Or am I missing the point in just wanting to assign a “text speak” handle for blog purposes?

RISE UP

J.J.M.

October 14th, 2009
7:13 pm

lol@no friends gotta love ajc

Sekou Smith

October 14th, 2009
7:33 pm

I don’t know that Marvin’s injuries have been the kinds that result from some chronic, core strength issue Ramon. He broke a hand and busted his wrist and then hurt his back. That’s stuff that can happen to anyone. While I understand the theme to your question, I don’t know that a Tim Grover type fixes that sort of stuff. Some guys get the nicked up and some guys are lucky and do not.

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
7:38 pm

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
7:39 pm

Well, web video. But still pretty awesome.

doc

October 14th, 2009
7:47 pm

josh is the man, too funny. love it nire, shame your guy dosnt have half the stuff josh has, charisma and guts to lay it on the line. oh yeah, maybe this year.

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
7:51 pm

Dang. That J-Smoove commercial was just too funny.

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
7:52 pm

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
7:53 pm

On that note, I’m leavin’ the scene, I don’t wanna have to write this report….

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
7:53 pm

Sorry doc, but I can’t resist:

Yeah, because if there’s one thing that Stephon Marbury proved this summer, it’s that charisma and guts in web video is what separates the good from the great.

J.J.M.

October 14th, 2009
7:54 pm

lmao josh cant act

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
7:57 pm

JJM – I don’t think they were exactly asking Josh to do Shakesperean theater there, so I think I’ll avoid passing judgment on his acting skills :)

J.J.M.

October 14th, 2009
7:59 pm

like the video but it was horrible acting…huge josh fan so relax

primo

October 14th, 2009
8:03 pm

Great job on Smoove’s commercial Sekou. Keep it up

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
8:04 pm

It was supposed to be funny. It was. What’s the big deal?

Hey, we’re playing Memphis tonight, right?

J.J.M.

October 14th, 2009
8:05 pm

who said it wasnt funny? everybody said it was

J.J.M.

October 14th, 2009
8:07 pm

anybody have the audio for the game?

niremetal

October 14th, 2009
8:08 pm

My link was supposed to be to the HD version of Josh’s commercial, but it didn’t take. Ah well…

Ernest

October 14th, 2009
8:21 pm

Sekou, your reply had me ROTFLOL… :) Now that we are past that, was it Smitty?

doc

October 14th, 2009
8:25 pm

heh heh ray, you know what they say about poking a skunk …. look out. ;-)

only kidding nire. nuttin but respect or i would leave it alone.

Hoops

October 14th, 2009
8:36 pm

Who are the next two Hawks to get cut?

chuckw/deadjournalist

October 14th, 2009
8:47 pm

the jerk is in one of the hbo’s … just fyi

J-Quick

October 14th, 2009
8:50 pm

Ramon

October 14th, 2009
9:04 pm

Sekou, I understand. Just seems like Marvin has been favoring his back for more than one season now. Didn’t know if it was from something that could be worked on (similar to whats going on with Mcgrady). But glad nothing is going on like that then.

Sekou Smith

October 14th, 2009
9:07 pm

Sorry E. I’d go to jail before revealing a source!

Good questions Hoops. Just a little early. I don’t think anyone is going anywhere in the next couple of days.

J-Quick

October 14th, 2009
9:12 pm

Melvin

October 14th, 2009
9:17 pm

WTH? I’m just tuning into the game. Hawks scored 71pts in the 1st half. Mo Evans 21pts in the 1st half. My gosh…

TheHawksFan

October 14th, 2009
9:17 pm

71 POINTS in the 1st HALF!!!! DAMNNNNN!! Guys are trying to feed the FAMILY.. I aint Mad At Ya!!

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
9:24 pm

Shall I say it before somebody else does?

Big Ray

October 14th, 2009
9:25 pm

Oh, and to stir the pot in another direction…. :twisted: , here’s the top 10 blocks from last year, according to NBA.com.

Notice that Al Horford isn’t in here anywhere. Notice that Brook Lopez is in here TWICE. And before you think you know what’s going to happen, you better watch the whole thing. Heh heh heh!

http://www.nba.com/video/channels/top_plays/2009/09/16/nba_090916_blocks_top10.nba/index.html

Mz. Hawkdafied

October 14th, 2009
9:25 pm

Mo Evans with 21 pts. Wow!

Peeved

October 14th, 2009
9:28 pm

Yes ray Smoove is not there. I saw it months ago….I was peeved…

Mz. Hawkdafied

October 14th, 2009
9:28 pm

How many assists will JT0 get? I think he’s at 4 now if I’m reading the stats correctly.

Najeh Davenpoop

October 14th, 2009
9:37 pm

Nice to see the Hawks kicking some azz tonight. 64% shooting, 6/7 from 3, and 12 forced turnovers will usually get it done. I don’t mean to be the Negative Nancy around here on a day when the Hawks are leading by 20 points, but Randolph Morris has 3 fouls and 2 turnovers in 4 minutes. Ouch.